BREAKING

Comedian Bill Cosby sentenced to prison

Package delayed? You’re not alone. Some UPS shipments are late amid a crush of holiday orders


Some UPS packages have been delayed amid a crush of orders from online sales the week after Thanksgiving, the shipping giant acknowledged Tuesday.

Sandy Spring-based UPS said some packages are taking an additional one to two days in transit, a situation expected to last through Wednesday, said company spokesman Steve Gaut.

The company expects to handle a total of 750 million packages over the holiday season, up 5 percent year-over-year. But “the volume that came in within Cyber Week was higher than our forecast or our operating plan,” Gaut said. “We weren’t able to fully adjust.”

VIDEO: In other UPS news

Cyber Monday has become Cyber Week, the period after Thanksgiving when online orders pick up among holiday shoppers looking for deals.

UPS Express deliveries had an 89.2 percent on-time rate last week based on delivery by end of day, according to Satish Jindel, president of tracking software developer ShipMatrix. That’s compared to a 99.4 percent on-time rate for FedEx Express. 

The company last Friday notified drivers in more than 100 locations, including at its Pleasantdale facility in metro Atlanta, that they may be subject to a work schedule of 70 hours over eight days through Jan. 5. That’s the federally-allowed maximum, after which a driver would be entitled to 34 hours of rest.

“Their actual work hours will be dependent on how the volume comes in and whether they’re needed on that kind of schedule,” Gaut said. Drivers get paid time-and-a-half for overtime pay above 8 hours a day. UPS is also hiring 95,000 seasonal workers to help in facilities and as driver helpers during the holiday season.

He said UPS sent some of its office staff to locations that needed extra help to “work through some of the bottlenecks after last weekend.”

Teamsters general president James P. Hoffa wrote a letter to UPS CEO David Abney on Monday expressing “outrage and concern” over the 8-day/70 hour workweek for drivers. Hoffa wrote that the decision was made “without any regard for the physical toll that will result from working the additional hours the Company will compel. And it callously ignores the plans [drivers] may have made for spending time with their families this holiday season.” UPS and the Teamsters are in contract negotiations.

The spike in online orders came in spite of new UPS peak surcharges aimed at smoothing out volume with accompanying efforts by retailers like Macy’s offering $10 in Macy’s Money store credit in exchange for delayed delivery, Gaut said.

“If the customer didn’t follow their lead, then they still ordered and we were still obligated to get the packages to them,” Gaut said.

UPS reduced its service guarantee last week, allowing it more time to make deliveries. But depending on the type of UPS shipping used, some retailers may be eligible to file a claim because of late shipments, according to Gaut.

MYAJC.COM: REAL JOURNALISM. REAL LOCAL IMPACT.

AJC Business reporter Kelly Yamanouchi keeps you updated on the latest news about Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, Delta Air Lines and the airline industry in metro Atlanta and beyond. You'll find more on myAJC.com, including these stories:

Never miss a minute of what's happening in local business news. Subscribe to myAJC.com.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Business

Delta launches website targeted at policy makers
Delta launches website targeted at policy makers

Delta Air Lines is debuting a website focused on issues it is pushing with policymakers. While companies’ lobbying efforts are sometimes done behind the scenes, the new site prominently shows some of Atlanta-based Delta’s biggest priorities in its efforts to influence government policy. The website at DeltaTakingAction.com also includes...
Atlanta’s Inspire Brands buys Sonic 
Atlanta’s Inspire Brands buys Sonic 

Atlanta-based Inspire Brands is buying Sonic in a $2.3 billion deal that will dramatically boost its size and reach, the companies announced Tuesday morning.  Sonic, which operates a chain of 3,500 restaurants with hundreds of franchisees, has about $4.4 billion in revenues – more than half the 7.6 billion in sales racked up by Inspire...
Shake Shack opens at Hartsfield-Jackson
Shake Shack opens at Hartsfield-Jackson

A Shake Shack has opened at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport. The burger eatery opened Tuesday on Concourse A near gate 28, and is operated by a joint venture of Atlanta-based Concessions International and H&H Hospitality. Shake Shack started in New York and gained a cult following, then expanded to other locations around the country...
Plant Vogtle: Crucial partner in Georgia nuclear project calls for cost cap
Plant Vogtle: Crucial partner in Georgia nuclear project calls for cost cap

Dreams of a U.S. nuclear energy renaissance have faded around the country, but a lone project slated to be paid for by Georgia consumers and businesses continues to survive, despite a troubled history and massive cost overruns. On Monday, the nuclear power expansion of Plant Vogtle cleared another hurdle. Sort of. But this time a crucial partner in...
More Stories